Procrastinators Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from chronic procrastination.

Codependence and Procrastination...your thoughts?

Hi everyone,

 I'm curious to hear if anyone has read about, heard about, thought about, or experienced a connection between codependency and procrastination.  Sometimes I get the feeling that I'm more productive when I isolate and I wonder if that has to do with codependency.  At the same time, I know that being connected to a support network is immensely helpful as well.  The downside of isolating is that when things go south, they continue to go south and it takes a lot more doing to get out of the slump.  The potential downside of connecting with a support network is that more time and energy can be spent engaging and participating in the network than DOING the very things that I'm seeking support for.

Thanks for your thoughts and comments.



Relationships - godsends & challenges

Hi everyone,

In the context of codependence, I started wondering... do relationships present more of a challenge in managing procrastination or do they make it easier?  Just curious. For me, strictly speaking about procrastination, they've been more of a challenge in the past.  I'm hoping to change that.  Thanks for your comments.


Relationships - godsends.....

Hi, everyone:

I am new here so, I am curious to know also. I am a co-dependant (some one say that we are all co-dependant one way or the other) with my husband when is money related. For years I am linked to him for work. I've tried to break away from it at not avail; always I have to do something with him to earn money. I love the guy anyhow. It is a challange for me all this for he also is a big time procastinator.

I am new in this list; hope to learn and progress to a new way of life.



I'd say having someone else

I'd say having someone else in your life makes it easier to avoid the worst but harder to achieve the best (there's someone to help you out of total collapse-in-heap mode, but there's also an extra commitment/distraction that makes it harder to get everything done.)

Having said that, I don't think the effect on your procrastination is necessarily a reason to be with/not be with someone. If you love each other, I think you should go for it and deal with the procrastination problem together. (Conversely, if you'd rather be single, I don't think you should be in a relationship just because it helps you get stuff done. But I'm aware that that's not the problem here. :) )


Hi Lucky,

 Agreed.  I look forward to meeting the right person for me and enjoying a better quality of relationship as I become more aware of how to best take care of my own needs! :)  As always, thanks for your comments!


In my life the connection

In my life the connection between procrastination and codependy manifests itself in the following way.  When I have to do something for myself, I often postpone doing it and even if I start I give up easily when I come against a problem.  But as soon as somebody else has a problem I get involved and don't let up until I find a solution to their problem.  Crazy, isn't it ? 

If you can't move the mountain, move a few stones.

I get that too! Actually

I get that too! Actually (and further to Hope's comment about nothing in the literature) I *have* seen a line somewhere that said 'Codependents - when it's for themselves and not for someone else - do have a great deal of trouble 'doing things'.'

This was in a piece on codependency. Never seen anything about it in the literature on procrastination!

Lucky, I suppose you don't

Lucky, I suppose you don't remember where you found that line about Codependents ? 


If you can't move the mountain, move a few stones.


@Amy1867: I think it might

@Amy1867: I think it might have been 'The Road Less Travelled' by M. Scott Peck.


Exactly!  If someone needs something, my routine goes out the window and their "to dos" become mine while mine get pushed to ever-tomorrow.  I too find it much easier to be focused when it's on behalf of someone else rather than on my own pursuits.  Ugh.  Can be discouraging.  Keeping my own connection to spirit and my deepest self fresh and vital through meditation and writing help me to find that passion and joy in pursuing my own life's creations!  Moreover, once you're participating in your own life this way, with respect, worth, and enthusiasm, lending a hand to others becomes truly fulfilling and meaningful.

 Thanks for your comments, Amy & Lucky!  I think there's so much to this topic!


This is the fix!

If all of us do great when handling other people's to-do lists, maybe we just need to find another procrastinator IRL and switch off to-do lists! Then each gets all their stuff done!  :grin:



I identify with a lot of

I identify with a lot of what you've said! I've had serious codependency problems in the past and still have some now. I think for someone with codependent tendencies, the working alone vs. working with company equation goes:

Working with people:
Good because you get praised, noticed, and validated, and if you're codependent that makes ALL the difference.
Bad because if people show any sign of needing/wanting your attention, you can feel that you have to give it rather than work.

Working alone:
Good because nobody is there to need attention
Bad because you're alone. I personally feel a LOT of my procrastination is caused by feeling alone, almost as if I stop functioning when nobody's looking.

Unfortunately I think the only sensible answer is to steer a middle path, and we all find temperance harder than abstinence! Isolation isn't healthy, but neither is getting into a 'codependent relationship' WITH PA :) I'm trying to guard against that by using chat less and saving it for when I really feel I need it.

Good topic! Anyone else have any thoughts?

Thanks for contributing

I found your comments very interesting.  My suspicion is that this is a fairly prevalent occurence so I was just curious as to what others' have experienced since there doesn't seem to be much literature on the overlap of these two tendencies.

Thanks again for chiming in!  Looking forward to any future comments :)


I think there is definitely

I think there is definitely a connection between codependency and procrastination.

Robin Norwood said in his book:  ‘Women who Love Too Much’:

<<Symptoms of codependency (or dependency) disorders include: perfectionism, workaholism, procrastination, ....... >>

And here is another article about this subject which you might find interesting:

It all comes back to our childhoods and how we learned to cope then.  I know that my procrastination stems from there.  If you are constantly made to feel that whatever you do it's not good enough, in the end there doesn't seem too be any point in trying any more.  


If you can't move the mountain, move a few stones.

Wow...Your comment

Wow... Your comment really made me stop and think.  This makes a lot of sense.  I have a perfectionistic streak; but as I get older and energy wanes, I notice it's becoming more of a fatalistic streak.  There's this odd interplay between two opposing energies: 1) the part of me that is an explorer, has big dreams, and wants to do EVERYTHING! and 2) the part of me that doesn't want to do anything--here's where your comment struck me-- who's to say where that lack of interest comes from?  I can say it feels like X,Y, or Z just don't seem interesting enough, or that I don't have enough energy, or that it would take too much or too long (to become accomplished to a level that is fulfilling enough and maybe as you suggest offers that "high" that corresponds to the praise a young child would receive from his or her parents), etc.  Perhaps it's because nothing was ever good enough.  Scratch that, 'perfect' was good enough. As an adult 'perfect' for the sake of perfect just doesn't cut it and here you are left dragging your feel or avoiding doing things completely.

This just goes to remind me, I need to spend time remembering and fostering my dreams, just like a relationship.  I need to keep the fire stoked and maintain the spark between myself and my dreams.

Thanks Amy :)